Milestone 1 Preproduction Dev Diary
As you can see I did not end up doing a daily dev blog. That turned out to be too much work and we did not have a large enough team or scope to warrant daily updates. So now I plan/hope to do a post once a week.
We finished prototyping with a bang. We really enjoyed a lot of what we had done with things like combat, abilities, inventory. We cut a few things that were not performing well like our spirit animal and puzzle system. We went into preproduction with what we felt is a really strong starting point.
So now we are in pre-production and moving forward with our role-playing game. We are not implementing more RPG type features like experience and quest systems while we continue to work on refining combat, AI, and general game stability.
Some of the systems we are building up right now and improving are the inventory and combat systems. They were our big focus in prototyping now it is time to get them refined.
For the combat system, we have added in combos to the main attack to make the standard melee attack feel more alive. Part of the combat system is our ability system and that got a complete overhaul to allow for combo abilities and to speed up combat and give the player more control over their avatar during combat. We are constantly trying to improve this system and we hope when we start to get playtesters providing some feedback we can fine-tune it even further.
The inventory was in a pretty good place but we wanted to add more so this week we have been working on adding a Hotbar that allows the player to place potions that they can use with a hotkey. That is mostly in place and we are just working out some small bugs. We are also working on the tooltips to give the players more feedback on what an item does.
The AI has had a complete overhaul as well. All of the AI's have been moved over to a state-driven behavior tree and the AI controllers are being worked into work with an AI manager that will help guide the AI's during a combat phase. The AI manager will work on controlling the frequency of attacks from the AI agents to keep the player from being overwhelmed while still giving the feeling of a lifelike battle. When this is complete we hope to be able to throw a lot of enemies at the player and give that feeling of being powerful by being able to defeat large numbers of enemies.
The new systems for this milestone are Quest, Experience, our dodge is now an official feature, and we are adding puzzles back in. All of this should be complete by the end of the week. What I mean by complete is we have the system in the game and testable. The next milestone we will focus on improving these features and fine-tuning them to integrate well into the vision for the game.
We have a long way to go but after the 5-month project we hope to have a small game that is fun with a decent story for everyone to play. Stay tuned for future updates!